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New Jersey High School Holds Diversity Training After a Student Wore Literal Blackface to a Halloween Party

Illustration for article titled New Jersey High School Holds Diversity Training After a Student Wore Literal Blackface to a Halloween Party
Image: Watchung Hills Regional High School

A high school in New Jersey held diversity training after officials learned that at least two students attended a Halloween party dressed as a slave in blackface and a slave owner. What the actual fuck.


According to the New Jersey Echoes-Sentinel, an image was circulating on social media that depicted a “Watchung Hills senior in blackface makeup and a black wig. Joining him in the photo is another Watchung Hills student brandishing a whip and wearing a cowboy hat.”

The photo appears to portray a white slave master and black slave. Many on social media said the student with the whip was dressed as Indiana Jones or a cowboy, and did not plan his costume with the student in blackface.


Never has a Halloween come and gone without news of cultural insensitivity rippling through some part of our dumb country, but this sets a heinous low. Elizabeth Jewett, the school district’s superintendent, released a statement Sunday night that she condemns, “in the strongest terms possible, the conduct of some of our students who saw fit to reopen a dark chapter in our nation’s history.”

“We will be undertaking a thorough investigation into this matter and have already notified law enforcement in the event that any hate crime laws are implicated,” she said.

“The Watchung Hills Regional High School community takes pride in promoting diversity, equity and inclusion in our policies, programs and curricula. Rest assured that we will take all appropriate steps to ensure that the racial insensitivity and inappropriateness of these students’ actions serves not only as an important lesson to them, but to our entire student population.”

Turns out, the kids are not alright. We’re screwed.

Night blogger at Jezebel

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I am Marsupial!

So, obviously blackface is endlessly shitty. But is it a prosecutable hate crime? Honest question. I am confused as to why law enforcement was notified.